I am aware of a great deal of confusion, and anxiety regarding OPEB. I can assure you that your district administrators are doing everything we can to assemble a package as soon as possible we believe will be fair and prudent. As I am writing this, four separate scenarios have been submitted to an actuary for a cost analysis of each scenario. The cost analysis for each scenario will be presented to board commissioners who will be making the final decision.
I would like to share with you my report from last Tuesday’s board meeting.
Superintendent Schulte reviewed the status of the issues and gave her recommendation:
The Board had a workshop on OPEB on September 23, 2013, Superintendent Schulte gave a live message to staff in early October to bring their attention to this matter then two Meet and Confer sessions were held with concerns aired hence tonight’s agenda item to determine which options to send to the actuary to determine cost.
Superintendent Schulte recommended that any scenario grandfather in at the very least employees who are eligible for retirement over the next ten years, and she asked the commissioners to send scenarios 2 (continuing our current plan) and 3 (grandfathering in employees that will be eligible in the next ten years then eliminating OPEB for higher salary or other benefits) to the actuary for a cost analysis. She said she understands the anxiety being experienced by district employees, and she believes they need to have answers by Jan/Feb to make good decisions.
CFO Pennington reported actuary cost per scenario will be about $1,500.
Commissioner Murray moved to have scenarios 2 and 3 sent to the actuary.
The motion to send 2 and 3 to actuary passed unanimously 6-0; Commissioners Ardry, Myers and Schilling were absent.
Commissioner DiStefano moved to send scenario 4 (prepared by Jim Reif for the JEA) with and without a vesting provision and scenario 5 (prepared by Commissioner Sodemann) to the actuary. Motion passed 6-0.